Over 5 6 7 8 million views on Youtube and counting….
There once was a video posted with over 8 million views but that no longer exists. YouTube, Labels, Google, or whoever deemed it copyrighted material and had it taken down. What remains below is the same video with a much less impressive view count. Such is the internet. Sic transit gloria.
I'll leave the above embed as an "in memorium" with the embed below for posterity.
Made back in 2004, this was an unsolicited, non-commissioned, unofficial video made before Youtube and before the term "fan-made" was a part of my vocabulary. We shot the video without the band's permission but I did talk to Win and Regine afterwards, let them know what we were doing, and told them I'd send them a copy.
The video is made up of two different Arcade Fire shows. I filmed one camera at the High Dive in Champaign-Urbana, IL and two friends (Eric Harvey & Caleb Mathern) filmed the band playing at the Southgate House the following night. Will Butler was still in college at Northwestern at the time so he only came down for the Illinois show, hence his absense from the Southgate House footage.
This was their first "headlining tour" and they were booked in venues with a capacity of a couple hundred people. The show I attended actually had to switch the venue to something bigger at the last minute because the excitement around this band was already growing and growing fast. But they were not yet the 'biggest-indie-band-in-the-world' that we know and love today. They set up their own gear and they hung out at the bar after the show. It remains to this day the single best live experience I've ever had.
A bit of fun trivia: One of the shooters at the Southgate House show was music journalist Eric Harvey, who since then has become a music journalist as well as a writer for Pitchfork.